Why China's Aircraft Carriers Are Only Getting Better
China’s next aircraft carrier is likely to boast a lot more combat power.
On June 20, China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC), the firm that makes China’s aircraft carriers, posted an image on its social media accounts showing three aircraft carriers. On the right and left were the Liaoning—China’s first carrier, which was built by Ukraine—as well as China’s first domestically-built carrier.
Unlike those carriers, which have a ski-jump launch systems, the mysterious third carrier in the middle of the image had a flat flight deck with three catapult-like devices. This suggests it relies on a catapult launch system.
As the Hong Kong–based South China Morning Post pointed out, the image appeared to be an artist’s drawing rather than an actual photo of a new carrier. Furthermore, CSIC quickly removed the image from its social media accounts.
If China’s third carrier uses a catapult launch system—making it a Catapult Assisted Take-Off, Barrier Assisted Recovery (CATOBAR) carrier—it will boast far more combat power than Beijing’s current vessels. This type of launch system allows the carrier to launch and recover larger and much heavier aircraft.
Besides allowing for a greater variety of aircraft, planes operating from a CATOBAR carrier can carry more weapons and extra fuel for longer trips. They can also use much larger airborne early warning aircraft to protect the ship.
Additionally, CATOBAR carriers can launch aircraft at a faster rate.
That China’s third carrier will feature a catapult launch system isn’t a huge surprise. As South China Morning Post noted, “satellite images released earlier showed sites in Wuhan, Shanghai and Liaoning where the new system might have been tested.”
There have also been reports that China’s carrier-based fighter, the J-15, was being modified to use the catapult system.
More telling, in November 2017 the South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported, citing“military sources,” that Beijing had achieved a technological breakthrough that would allow its next carrier to use a electromagnetic aircraft launch system (EMALS) without the use of nuclear power.
As CNN notes, “Aircraft launched by electromagnetic catapults can get airborne quicker and with greater quantities of fuel and ammunition, giving them an advantage over planes launched by standard steam catapult.”
The problem is that electromagnetic catapults require more power than steam power systems. And, steam catapults themselves require tons of power, which is why most (but not all) CATOBAR carriers are powered by nuclear reactors.
According to the aforementioned SCMP article, Chinese engineers believe they solved this problem by developing an integrated propulsion system (IPS), which would generate enough power to use EMALS.
The article said that the breakthrough came when using a “medium-voltage, direct-current transmission network” rather than a system using an alternating current. This required a “complete overhaul of the energy supply and distribution system – from steam boilers to the energy storage device,” said Wang Ping, an expert at the Institute of Electrical Engineering under the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing. The U.S. Zumwalt-class destroyers use an integrated propulsion system.
In building aircraft carriers, China appears to be following a policy of gradual improvements. The first domestically built carrier was very similar to the Liaoning. The next one, it appears, with have the electromagnetic catapult launch system. It is widely speculated the third carrier will be nuclear-powered.
译文来源：三泰虎 http://www.santaihu.com/48926.html 译者：Joyceliu
Another question: why US navy war ships are getting more and more expensive, and less and less useful?
They also have the advantage of knowledge plus advantage technology.
So we expected to get worse? lol
Carriers? They have one. And it couldn't possibly be any worse so yes your article is correct about one thing. It can only get better, over years and years of trial and error.
As a matter of fact Thailand has AN aircraft carrier too
NOooooooo… the Chinese cant build stuff specially aircraft carriers... only the US can, only the US can, only the US can......
Chinese get 4-5 versions out, each one with improvements based on experience from previous, and. I guarantee, CVA capability will be formidable.
On their own, China is catching up to our WWII carrier technology without theft of intellectual property.
Of course they’re getting better. Starting from a very low place.
My iPhone, Latop, Drones and TV are all made in China and they're working great.
Hard not to improve when you are at the bottom of the heap.
Maybe the next one will be useful in warfare.
BUT, BUT carriers are "dinosaurs" !! They're "sitting ducks" !! BUNK !! Every blue water navy in the world is building or buying carriers. So I guess that means they ain't so obsolete.
Nation hating Yahoo fake news is obsessed with China’s 1960s level carriers.
How can anyone be surprised by this?
Baby steps.....and eventually they'll learn how to walk and then run. We've been running on full speed for so long that watching others taking little steps makes us laugh....hope we're paying attention and run faster.
Or is it because they are so bad there is no place to go but up not all design secrets are on the internet
Lol, china is 100 years and several dozen aircraft carriers behind the USN.
Still made in China! Meaning cheap parts used.
Its very hard to get worse when you keep practicing something over and over again.
Russian military evil! Turkey military Evil! ! American military angel!
When your carriers start out as trash, they can only get better.
Russia is helping them out.
Well all i can say is that there better than Russias !!
why are you so afraid. our biggest enemy is and will always be Japan. selfish whale eaters
Francis Hao Quoc Le
I always thought stuff made in China are all #$%$.
What joke of an article!! The pile of junk is barely staying above the water line!! Get real on what you write!
you fools because we keep buying stuff from them and they keep making big weapons pointed at whom? If you still don't know who the enemy is you should question your brain!